Page last updated: Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Wine may protect against bowel cancer
New research reveals that wine may protect against bowel cancer - the second most common form of cancer, claiming 18,000 British victim a year alone. Compared with teetotallers those who drank at least a glass of red or white a week were much less likely to suffer bowel cancer.

The researchers , led by Dr. C. Messina from the State University of New York analysed examinations on 1,500 people. They were looking for polyps, or adenomas which grow on the wall of the bowel and trigger bowel cancer. It was found that only 1% of wine drinkers had significant polyps, compared with 18% of grain-based spirit drinkers and 12% of those who abstained, the findings being statistically significant. Patients who had a history of bowel cancer, inflammatory disease or polyps were excluded to avoid skewing the results.

Dr Messina's study was the first to examine the varying effects of different types of alcohol, the researchers defining alcohol use as a glass of wine, can of beer, or one measure of spirit at least once a week.

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